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Old 06-05-2014, 08:33 AM
 
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I fractured my left wrist and will be getting a cast put on this afternoon. Was told I can't let it get wet, so does anybody have any tips or tricks for doing this? Are there any commercial, tight fitting plastic sleeves I can pull over it for showers etc.? Also, how limited will my hand be? Will I be able to wring out a wash cloth, mop the floor, open cans and jars, etc? I'm really bummed about this!

Last edited by sayulita; 06-05-2014 at 08:43 AM..
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Old 06-05-2014, 08:39 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sayulita View Post
I fractured my left wrist and will be getting a cast put on this afternoon. Was told I can't let it get wet, so does anybody have any tips or tricks for doing this? Are there any commercial, tight fitting plastic sleeves I can pull over it for showers etc. Also, how limited will my hand be? Will I be able to wring out a wash cloth, mop the floor, open cans and jars, etc? I'm really bummed about this!

I fractured my wrist in the 90s and worn an arm cast almost to my elbow. I remember feeling panic at first when I struggled to zip my pants. But it just takes some getting used to, and you will figure out how to maneuver and use your hand. I could move my fingers and type, but my thumb was immobile.

As for the shower, you can keep it dry with just a trash bag and rubber bands. Maybe double layer just to be safe.
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Old 06-05-2014, 08:45 AM
 
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So with an immobile thumb, how limited were you? Could you cook, clean etc.?
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:36 AM
 
Location: In a house
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The point of having a cast is to IMMOBILIZE the bones underneath the cast. So sure, maybe you could wring out a washcloth, but that kind of defeats the purpose of having a cast. You're supposed to NOT do stuff like that.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Up North in God's Country
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Go to a Home Medical store. There are plastic sleeves with elastic at the top and bottom to cover a cast. It looks like Walmart has them online: Seal Tight Cast and Wound Protector Adult Long Arm - Walmart.com

I fractured my wrist 3 years ago but had a plate and screws put in, so I had a removable splint.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:48 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MissSoBelle View Post
Go to a Home Medical store. There are plastic sleeves with elastic at the top and bottom to cover a cast. It looks like Walmart has them online: Seal Tight Cast and Wound Protector Adult Long Arm - Walmart.com

I fractured my wrist 3 years ago but had a plate and screws put in, so I had a removable splint.
Thank you! I just checked the link and found they are in stock at a nearby store. Will get one this morning. Just to be able to take a shower will be huge.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:52 AM
 
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Originally Posted by AnonChick View Post
The point of having a cast is to IMMOBILIZE the bones underneath the cast. So sure, maybe you could wring out a washcloth, but that kind of defeats the purpose of having a cast. You're supposed to NOT do stuff like that.
You're right. You're right. I'm just in denial right now. But I'll get by with a little help from my friends.
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Upstate NY
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You have my sympathy.

I broke my wrist for the second time late last spring, and wore a cast that pretty much left me helpless. It was my dominant hand, and I cannot write with my left hand. I need to sign my name a lot, and ended up getting a signature stamp, which helped immensely.

As for the showering, that was the worst part for me, I'm prone to dermatitis and had horrors of even steam getting under the sleeve, or having some reaction to it. So, it was birdbaths for me. Ugh. If there was one plus this time, it was that last year's summer weather was late to arrive, so I didn't have to endure that with a casted arm.

Suggestions:

-That sleeve might just work for you.

-After a few days, I was able to wring a washcloth

-If you have to put your hair up, do it while lying down on the bed. I couldn't believe how easy that was, and I couldn't lift my arm to do that while standing.

-Get one of those long, ribbed plastic straws. The doctors say not to scratch an itch, but that thing was a lifesaver when I broke my wrist the first time (no itching second time around) in the middle of summer. The straw was very long, and hung out of the cast--that's where I kept it once the swelling went down and the cast got loose lol.

Good luck!
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:05 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
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A cast on the arm is definitely easier to shower with than one on the leg. When I had one on my leg, I would wrap it in trash bags and then leave that leg out of the shower (had to shower in a chair anyhow). Water would still run down my leg and into the cast. Fiberglass casts will soften and lose their shape if they get very wet, so even with the cover or bag on, be careful.

One thing I learned when my daughter had a cast on her arm: if it goes up near your armpit, get some spray deodorant and apply that to the part of the cast near the armpit when you put your usual deodorant on. My daughter only had to have her cast three weeks but we almost had to have it changed out sooner because it smelled so bad. We figured out the deodorant thing at the very end.


And your floor can wait until you're recovered...just squirt a little cleaner on the really dirty spots, drop a paper towel on it and rub with your foot
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:14 AM
 
Location: In a house
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Originally Posted by sayulita View Post
You're right. You're right. I'm just in denial right now. But I'll get by with a little help from my friends.
If it makes you feel any better, they told me when I had a cast on my arm, to NEVER try to stick anything down to scratch when the dried skin starts flaking off (we shed our skin regularly - the cast keeps it from going anywhere so it itches like crazy and stinks like old vinegar). So what did I do? I did the most obvious thing - I unbent a metal hanger and stuck the end down under my cast and scratched. Thankfully - I didn't scratch hard enough to make it bleed.

I also rebelled against the spirit of the concept of a cast - while I was recovering in the hospital from the surgeries, some friends came to visit, with their instruments and my guitar. And we all went into the solarium and performed for the other patients there. With a cast on my -left- arm - I had to position my hand around the neck of the guitar, THEN slide the guitar in place on my lap, before I could even get my fingers to touch the strings. The doctor almost had a stroke watching me, but I was determined!
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